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Trump Administration
  Meet the Press  MSNBC  April 30, 2017 11:05am-11:20am PDT

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obama administration. >> well, we got a lot to get to, so no better person to talk to than my next guest, vice president mike pence. welcome back, sir. >> thank you. >> happy day 101. >> thank you. >> mr. trump made the comment that he thought being president would be easier. what has he found to be harder than expected so far? >> i don't know that he's found it harder. i think he has found the range of issuess president of the united states at home and abroad, given the path of the last administration, to be particularly challenging. in so many ways, the president has said the world is a mess. he spent an awful lot of time in the first 100 days re-engaging the world. he speent many of us around the world to restrengthen america's ties around the world, we're rebuilding our military, we're rethinking trade agreements that have been costing american jobs, and then here at home, the president has rolled his sleeves up literally, not just 100 days, chuck, but since the day after
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the election, the president has been out there fighting for american jobs. in 2017 alone, more than 500,000 jobs have been created. you see optimism among job creators in america, enthusiasm among consumers across the country. it's just -- i think -- we went through a difficult time the last eight years, but america is back under president donald trump. >> but in many ways, he has found himself -- it's almost like washington has either moved him or has defeated him so far. would you accept that? i mean, you look at his positions on nato or even the pullback on nafta a little bit, what he has said about china. it's all fallen into the washington conventional wisdom. >> i don't really share your perspective on that, with all due respect, chuck. on the international scene, here is a president who said that nato had to change, that our nato allies had to begin to step up, to begin to share the burden of the cost of our common defense. and they are. they're also changing the
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mission of nato to focus more on terrorism. that's exactly what the president called for. i mean, he didn't change on nato, nato changed. >> but nato changed years ago. nato has been at the forefront in afghanistan fighting terrorism. he's not the first president to complain that the rest of the nato nations don't pay their fair share. >> most of them don't. the president is going to be visiting nato in just a couple weeks and he'll deliver that strong message again. and i know the secretary general is standing shoulder to shoulder with him. but look, you look at what this president has done, come to washington, d.c. to fight for the forgotten men and women of this country, and they see him doing it each and every day. i mean, he announced this week that we're going to renegotiate nafta. in the early days of the administration, we got out of the trans-pacific partnership where things the president said would have made nafta failers pale in comparison. he literally each and every day has been out there fighting to keep his word with the american
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people, and he frankly has been fighting against the gale force wind of the establishment here in washington, d.c., and frankly fighting against the gale force wind against many in the national media who constantly would like to change the subject away from the president's relentless effort to keep his promises to the american people. >> one of the big promises had to do with a ton of legislative action. i want to put on the board -- these are pieces of legislation he promised to at least introduce and begin fighting for. no one said he was going to sign all this. that i will give you. tax reform, offshoring jobs, infrastructure school choice, health care, child care, ethics reform, military crime and drugs. the only place where there's been any action actually in congress is really on health care. so what's taken so long getting these other aspects introduced, or was it an overpromise? >> no, it waents sn't an overpr,
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and remember this president has signed more bills in the first 100 days than harry truman. he's rolled back job-killing legislation signed into law -- >> we're not on health care, we're not on tax reform. i'm talking the big signature pieces of legislation. >> but he signed over 30 different executive orders on virtually every of those topics you just referred to, and we're working with the congress. i think health care reform, repealing and replacing obamacare is just around the corner because this president is driving relentlessly toward an agenda to make america great again. i got to tell you, when we were out, we were out visit ing a factory yesterday near harrisburg, pennsylvania, you saw overwhelming support. the president virtually enjoys unanimous support of the people who supported us in last year's election. but what was more inspiring to me, as we walked the shop room floor, not just the business owners expressing enthusiasm for the president's plan to cut
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business taxes and cut taxes across the board. but the guys that had paused from working on the line to reach out to this president and just thank him for being there. somebody said to me recently that everybody that puts on a steel-toed boot in this country knows they have somebody fighting for them every day, and it's absolutely true and it's president donald trump. >> let's get into some details. we were talking about health care a little bit. i know you've been working hard on this. you're back and forth, people see you ducking into different congressional offices, and one of them has to do with this so-called mcarthur amendment that some moderates on the republican side are concerned about. let me play some sound on that and get you to respond. >> i wouldn't be surprised if they pass something. but i'm not for it. i'm just telling you. >> it could affect people with preexisting conditions. it will make insurance probably much more expensive for them and in some cases perhaps inaccessible. >> it doesn't help the people i represent. >> you've heard this concern, which is that if you essentially
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eliminate these essential benefits, you give the states the opportunity to essentially take out the protection for preexisting conditions, or if you do keep it, making it so that those folks are guaranteed toe paying a lot more for health insurance. if that's the case, how do you pass this thing? >> first, before i get to that, let's begin with the fact that obamacare has failed. it literally is collapsing all over the country. insurance companies are free from the exchanges -- >> that is a very debatable point, mr. vice president. a very debatable point. >> there are states around the country where literally people in half the state have no choice for health insurance at all. people have seen their insurance premiums skyrocket. the american people know that we need to repeal and replace obamacare, and president trump from the first day of this administration, has been working every single day to keep that promise to the american people. and i have to tell you, the legislative process is often slow. nobody knows that better than
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you. >> and yourself. you're a member of congress. >> what's the old saying, if you like sausage, don't go where they make it, right? we're remaking law here and we're unmaking a piece of legislation in american history. on this point, congress obviously wasn't ready to begin the process of repealing obamacare a little more than a month ago, but i think we're close. it is owing to the fact that you're seeing members of congress come together to repeal the owner's taxes and penalties that people pay if they don't have insurance in obamacare to expand health savings accounts to give governors like my friend john kasich all accessibility to improve medicaid to its citizens. but we're also keeping our promise to people that have preexisting conditions. >> besides protecting, are you going to be able to keep their premiums from skyrocketing? that's the concern. if you isolate them with the
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rise of insurance premiu, how do you protect that? >> first of all, you make it very clear like we d in the first bill, but with the amendments that have taken place in the last several weeks and come forward, it's even better still. we're basically borrowing an idea from the state of maine that has seen a significant drop in premiums for people on their health insurance because you take people that have preexisting and costly conditions and put them into a high-risk pool, and you subsidize that so it is affordable to those individuals. so you're guaranteeing coverage for preexisting conditions, and the flexibility that you're referring to in this latest mcarthur amendment, states can only apply for that waiver and flexibility if they have either a federal or state high-risk pool that guarantees that people will be able to have coverage, and it will be affordable. >> by the way, terrific segue. i have two main senators coming on the show later today. i will ask senator susan collins about that main risk pool. i'm going to go to taxes.
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by the way, on health care, i know the president expects a house vote in the next couple of weeks. are you going to be able to sign a new version of health care, whether it's full repeal or replace or not, by the end of this year? >> i believe through a series of bills, this first one, that we are hopeful there will be action in the house of representatives soon. and through executive action and through further legislation that will deliver on our promise to repeal and replace obamacare and give the american people the kind of world class health care they deserve. >> before the end of the year? not make that go promiing that ? >> i hope before the end of the year. i go back to the first point, chuck. i know you say it's debatable. get out across the country. obamacare has failed. every point of obamacare has been broken. people have lost the ability to choose their doctors. we've got to do better. we will under this president. >> lots of estimates, and we're very early in this process, i'm not going to get into too many of these weeds but the overall
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impact looks like a big shot at the deficit. some estimate 20 trillion over three years, as small as 3 million. if this tax reform plan increases the deficit, will the president still sign it? >> we have nearly a $20 trillion national debt that dbled under the last admistration. it didn't just double because of excessive gornment spending, it doubled because of a struggling american economy. we just got the numbers. 1.6%. the strongest economy on earth growing at less than 2%, and in less than 1% in the first quarter. look, all those statistics, and talking with everyday americans and job creators across this country attest to the fact that the american people are crying out for tax relief. we have one of the highest corporate tax rates in the world. the president is going to drive to lower that to 15% to make businesses large and small more competitive, and we're going to lower the tax rate to three
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marginal rates for every american and unleash the bound-up energy of the american economy. >> how are you going to pay for it? everything you outlined will increase the deficit, period. how do you prevent that? >> well, the only way we're going to meet the obligations that we face in deficits today or long-term obligations in our entitle entitlement, chuck, are through growth. the president has proposed one of the largest tax cuts in american history. and i have to tell you, the earlier response on kacapitol hl has been very encouraging. >> i understand people are happy about it, but you are going to increase the deficit. >> maybe in the short term. but the truth is if we don't get this economy growing at 3% or more as the president believes that we can,e're never going toeet the obligations that we've made today. >> quickly on south korea. i know you were in asia. there's some news this morning
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that the national security adviser, general mcmaster, has reassured our south korean allies about missile defense, about extra protections and that the united states is going to pay for this. president trump said south korea would. how are you going to square that? >> well, when the president asked me to go to south korea and japan and visit our allies in the region, it was to reassure them during these troubled times where we see increased provocations from the regime in north korea that america stands with them. america will defend them. and i have to tell you that the bonds between the people of south korea and the people of the united states forged during the korean war are immutable and unshakeable. however we resolve the issue of their defense, the people of south korea know that america will be there to defend them, even as they defend themselves. >> so at a minimum, we're not going to argue over the bill
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now, is what you're saying? >> look, the president has been very clear, whether it's our allies in europe or south korea or japan or other countries that we expect countries around the world to do more. whether it's this missile defense system or other systems, i think you can be confident the president of the united states is going to continue to call on the prosperous nations that the united states provides security and protection for to do more in their own defense. >> final question. you did lose the popular vote by an estimate of 3 million. and there has been some concern that this administration hasn't done enough to reach out to those who didn't support, and the fact is youan to bring this country back togeer. i believe you in that. buthy haven't you made a concrete step to reach out to the other side a little bit and to try to sort of heal some of these wounds? >> i think the president reaches out every day. i'm with him virtually every day, whether -- we were on the road yesterday out to pennsylvania, in the oval
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office, and i've seen an extraordinary collection of americans come through the white house, come through the oval office. we had the teacher of the year, teachers from all 50 states surrounding the president's desk. i've seen him reach out to leaders across the spectrum. last night he said it well -- >> it hasn't worked, though. last night awas a campaign rall and it may have felt good, but it was pretty divisive rhetoric. >> last night the president said whatever your race or your creed that we're all americans and we all have the same patriots' blood in our veins. i think you'll continue to see the president reach out, but look, this is a very tough time. america faces real challenges at home and abroad. it's created a great deal of anxiety among the american people. but i think as the american people see the strength and resolve of this president, as they see our economy coming back, opportunities for themselves and their children and grandchildren, and as they see a safer and more secure world because of the strong
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leadership of president donald trump, i'm confident you'll see more unity in american as a result. >> mr. vice president, i'm going to leave it